Chair, Academic Board: Professor James Walker

Method of appointment

Chair, Academic Board (elected):  ex officio1349068

Membership tenure

Elected 28 February 2022 - 28 February 2024

Current committees

  • Council;
  • Digital Transformation Committee
  • Finance & Resources Committee
  • Infrastructure and Estates Planning Committee
  • Academic Board (Chair)

Professional background/experience

James Walker is Professor of Language Diversity in the Department of Languages and Cultures and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.

He received a BA (Honours) in Linguistics and MA in Anthropology at the University of Toronto and an MA and PhD in Linguistics at the University of Ottawa. He held various positions at York University (Toronto) from 2000 to 2014, when he was promoted to full Professor. He took up his current position at La Trobe University in 2017 and was Head of the Department of Languages and Linguistics until 2020, when he became Deputy Chair of Academic Board. In 2022 he became Chair of Academic Board.

His research examines variation at all levels of language, from phonetic through grammatical to discourse-pragmatic, with an interest in the social and linguistic consequences of language contact, language change and ethnicity. Most of his research has been conducted on varieties of English (African American, Australian, Canadian, Caribbean) but he has also worked on Sango (Central African Republic), Brazilian Portuguese and Swedish.